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Carmageddon 2012 is the Perfect Excuse to Enjoy a Relaxing Southern California Weekend

Thursday, 27 September 2012 00:32 by Mandy

Cue the “Jaws” theme music. Carmageddon is back. The city of Los Angeles is closing a 10-mile length of Interstate 405 from 7pm on Friday, September 8th, until 5am the following Monday morning. One of the busiest and most frequently gridlocked highways will be shut down, leaving hundreds of thousands of drivers to fend for themselves in finding alternative routes around the overpopulated city. Here at APC, we ask the residents of LA: is this a blessing in disguise?

The city of Los Angeles has been synonymous with overcrowding, overpopulation, and worst of all: traffic. This blog writer has spent 4 years fighting beltway traffic on Interstate 495, just outside of Washington DC, and nothing could’ve prepared me for the time that I’ve spent in LA. I thought I was pretty clever when I timed my drive through downtown LA at 1am on my way home from Ventura, but apparently 10,000 other drivers had the same idea. I was swamped.

                For this coming weekend, it’s only going to get worse - or will it?

                Residents everywhere are gearing up for the second year of the infamous Carmageddon. Food is flying off of the shelves in supermarkets faster than it would the night before a hurricane, and once again, people expect to be trapped in their homes for a few days.  

                This is a bad thing, right? Maybe not. Weekends are commonly just as stressful as the work week, if not more so. I personally feel the pressure every weekend to spend my “free” time accomplishing a project around the house, or bouncing all over the city, trying to cram as many friends and as much fun into a 24 hour day as possible. Often times you spend the entire weekend worrying about making the weekend a justifiable reward to how hard you worked during the week.

                This is the weekend where you put all of those worries aside. Forget about taking 3 trips to Home Depot to fix the shelves in the kitchen cabinets – that’s for next weekend. This isn’t the dreaded SoCal rolling blackouts. In fact, Angelenos will find themselves with all of the amenities that their place of residence normally provides, along with some time to actually enjoy them for a change. Hang around the house with your family. Catch up on some sleep. Give your parents a call (we know you’ve been meaning to). Eat well, sit back with a drink in the sun, and have some good conversation with those that you care about. This “staycation” might be exactly what the doctor ordered to get your head on straight. Chances are, all of those things you HAVE to do this weekend will be there next weekend.

“Don’t underestimate the value of doing nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering”. Do you know who said that? That’s right. Winnie the Pooh.

We’ve got a lot to learn from those little guys. Maybe I’ll spend the weekend lounging on the couch, re-watching some of my childhood cartoons. After all, I’ve got nothing to do this weekend. 

Accidental Exploration of Oakland: A Beautiful Discovery

Wednesday, 19 September 2012 03:18 by Mandy
 
The beautiful bridges spanning across the world famous San Francisco Bay are one of the most recognizable manmade landmarks in the world. While San Francisco is a famously happening metropolitan area, many of the city’s guests don’t consider what a short drive across the bay can offer. We encourage you to venture over the bay bridge, on purpose or by accident, to see how dynamic the bay area truly is!
               
                The first time I visited San Francisco, I was on a Trans-American tour of the country in my father’s Honda sedan. We left Connecticut, and drove west to San Francisco. Upon arrival, we were wide-eyed with mouths agape. The sights and locations that San Francisco offers are completely overwhelming. Similarly to my experiences in New York: if you don’t know the secrets gems, you’re only experiencing 10% of the city. Fortunately, travel blogs and twitter feeds have unearthed many of the city’s buried beauties and will help you break free of Fisherman’s Wharf Syndrome.
                However, since we were on the road so much, and with the complete freedom that the Honda gave us– we found ourselves completely enamored by the bridges. Certainly, everyone needs to drive over the Golden Gate, but what happens when you’re visiting SF and find yourself on the other side of the bay bridge with a couple hours to kill? Do you turn around and do another tour of the Ghirardelli factory? Of course not, that’s why we’re here to help!
                Oakland travel websites have extensively covered how to make the most out of a trip to Oakland, but we’re going to narrow it down a little bit. This is for people, like me, wandered across the bridge and finding myself with a couple hours and a city I knew nothing about. Here are some ideas for quick entertainment and sightseeing:
 
Jack London Square (@JackLondonSq) – If you’ve never been to Oakland, Jack London Square should be your first stop. It’s the main waterfront entertainment and dining area in Oakland and is the perfect stop for a quick walkabout to stretch those cramped car legs. Not driving? Check out Heinold’s First and Last Chance Saloon for something strong!
 
The Crucible (@TheCrucible) – SF isn’t the only bay area city with culture. This nonprofit industrial arts school was founded and Berkeley and moved to Oakland. Since 2003, The Crucible has been deadest on engaging the nearby community in the arts. In addition to parks and art centers in the nearby area, you can check the events page and follow The Crucible on twitter for events and activities. Hungry? Head to Brown Sugar Kitchen for some tasty waffles. Love art galleries? Check out http://proartsgallery.org/ for a list of exhibitions!
 
East Bay Winery Bike Tours (@EBWBikeTours) – California is synonymous with great wine, and now you don’t need to drive out to the valleys to do some tasting. Park the car, hop on a bike and enjoy fun and original take on a wine tasting tour. Not sold yet? Head to http://eastbaywinerybiketours.com/ and watch the video to see if this looks like something you would enjoy!
 
Have any more tips? We would love to hear them! 

The Parks at LAX Airport

Friday, 7 September 2012 02:04 by Mandy

Attention LAX travelers, Airport Parking Connection has another recommendation for your parking needs when flying out of busy LAX. This week’s suggestion is a double header, LAX Park Place and The Park at LAX are two local LAX airport offsite parking garages that have been in business for 30 years providing travelers with exceptional customer service, covered and uncovered valet/self parking options and affordable rates for both long term and short term stays making either one an ideal choice for whatever your needs are. Both of these locations offer free shuttle and luggage assistance to and from the airport that operate 24/7 year round so you don’t need to worry about searching for parking and hauling your luggage through busy Lot C at the airport. Though these are two separate locations their processes are similar to one another and are simple enough to follow:

 

  1. ·         First, go online to AirportParkingConnection to make your parking reservation at either LAX Park Place or The Park at LAX (make sure you print out the confirmation email with your reservation details and keep it handy until after you've returned from your trip and have exited the garage).
  2. ·         Pull into the garage that you made your reservation with and check in with the lot attendant for instructions and your claim ticket (you’ll need to present the attendant with your confirmation receipt).
  3. ·          Then hop onto a shuttle over to your terminal at the airport and you’re on your way.
  4. ·         When you return from your trip make sure to keep your claim ticket handy so you can call the shuttle service number on the back to come pick you up when you exit your flight.
  5. ·         20 minutes later you’re back at the parking garage ready to go home.

 

Both locations are close to the airport and accessible from the 105 and 405 freeways. LAX Park Place is located at 11333 La Cienega Blvd. LosAngeles, CA 90045(for directions click on the address) across the street from Lot B at the airport, and the phone number you want to call when you return and need to get picked up is 1(800) 606-7275. The Park at LAX is located at 11220 Hindry Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90045 (for directions click on the address), and their phone number is1(888) 910-7275. It’s usually better to plan on arriving at either one of these location 20 minutes before you want to arrive at your terminal to allow for ample time to fill out any necessary paperwork and load luggage onto the shuttle. Also, for the best rates be sure to book as much in advance as possible with Airport Parking Connection.com. Happy and safe travels LAX parkers!   

LAX: New Valet on the Block

Thursday, 30 August 2012 01:55 by Mandy

Fellow LAX travelers, I am here today to tell you about a great new parking option you can use from now on when flying out of LAX. The company is called LAX Parking Curb Express and is a valet service ONLY that offers indoor and outdoor parking options at competitively priced rates, but this isn’t your typical valet service we’re talking about here.

Book for LAX Parking Curb Express online with Airport Parking Connection to guarantee your spot.  When you pull up to their location off Sepulveda a member of the valet staff will hop in and drive you in your own car to your terminal while you fill out necessary paper work, once the valet has helped you unload your luggage at your terminals curbside the valet will give you your claim ticket (keep it handy because you’ll need it when you return) then drive your car back to the lot till you come back.

Helpful tips: make sure after you’ve loaded your luggage and passengers there is still space for one more passenger (the valet). You’ll also need your flight information such as flight number, departure/arrival times and airlines when booking your reservation with Parking Curb Express so they can plan accordingly for your departure/arrival. To get your car back when you return from your trip, call the number on your claim ticket (310) 410-9906 to let Parking Curb Express know you’ve arrived. It’s IMPORTANT to remember that when returning if you have to pick your luggage up from baggage claim then you should WAIT to call Parking Curb Express to pick you up till AFTER you’ve claimed all of your luggage, otherwise call them when you exit your plane; Parking Curb Express parks and waits with your car at your terminals curbside but can only wait a short period of time for you as a result of police restrictions. As if this process didn’t make simplify things enough, after you pick your car up curbside you can drive straight home because the valet has his own way of getting back to the parking lot.

LAX Parking Curb Express is open 24/7 and located only about a block from LAX at 9800 South Sepulveda Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90045. Just drive North on Sepulveda Blvd. past West Century Blvd. then make the first right onto 98th street and go half way down the block and it’ll be on your right hand side. Open for a little over a year now LAX Parking Curb Express has already been enthusiastically embraced by many LAX commuting regulars, just check out all the great reviews on their yelp page. LAX Parking Curb Express has added a new unique spin to your LAX traveling experience that is attracting a lot of attention very quickly so make sure you book in advance with Airport Parking Connection to ensure you have a spot waiting for you when you pull up to LAX Parking Curb Express next time.  

The Foxier LAX Parking Option

Thursday, 23 August 2012 02:24 by Mandy

Traveling out of LAX anytime soon? If so then be sure to give Fox Auto Parks a look when it comes to your parking needs. Open 24/7, Fox Auto Parks is located about a mile from LAX airport at 10121 Glasglow Place,Los Angeles, CA 90045but be sure to pay close attention to street signs because Glasglow Place is easy to miss from 104th street if you aren’t looking. Fox Auto Parks offers complimentary valet and shuttle services to and from your terminal when you park with them, just pull up and leave your car in the front while you check in with the attendant to get your reservation ticket (Which also has the shuttle services phone number (310)342-6445 on the back).

You should plan to get to Fox Auto Parks at least twenty minutes before you want to arrive at your terminal, and upon your return call the shuttle service to let them know you’ve arrived so you won’t have to wait long to be picked up; you can also wait under the purple sign that reads RENTAL CAR PICK-UP ONLY, this can only be found in arrivals. Aside from great service, Fox Auto Parks has some of the more competitive rates in the LAX area that definitely make it worth giving it a try next time you’re planning a trip citizens of Los Angeles!  Visit Airport Parking Connection online to reserve your Fox Auto Parks parking reservation for the best deal around town.